Women stealing wallets from purses in Grapevine businesses

Grapevine has been targeted by women recently stealing wallets from purses.

Police say the latest suspect targeted women in several businesses and then quickly started using the stolen credit cards.

Grapevine police are looking for a couple of very brazen wallet thieves that spent a lot of stolen money in a hurry.

Kelly Lancaster owns Holy Grounds Coffee Shop in Grapevine's popular downtown shopping district. It was one of three businesses targeted two Saturdays ago by a woman who stole wallets from purses in back rooms.

"I mean I walked up. She's coming out of the back room,” Lancaster recalled. “We've in the past let people go to the bathroom, but that policy is going to change because of this."

Lancaster says the victim was a guest author doing a book signing who'd left her purse a back room with a young son who the thief distracted by asking him to get her toilet paper.

“You really don't expect somebody to come into a Christian shop and do this,” she said.

Grapevine police have posted surveillance photos of the woman and the white SUV she was driving. They say she also stole from employee purses in back rooms at a second shop on Main Street and a third on West Northwest Highway.

Just last week, Grapevine police posted video of another woman who they say targeted women in La Madeleine restaurants in Grapevine, Irving and Plano. She lifted wallets from purses while the victims dined. They don't think the two women are connected, except by the brazenness of their crimes and how quick they are to cash in.

"They take these wallets, and they start spending the money on the credit cards, debit cards immediately,” said Grapevine Police Spokesperson Amanda McKey. “A lot of times, people still see their purse. They don't know it's happened until they're already a victim of credit card abuse."

The surveillance video on the La Madeleine theft suspect is very clear and has yielded more than half a dozen tips and a call from Dallas police, who think the same woman also hit a restaurant there.

“We want those tips to keep coming in so people should keep sharing those photos as well,” McKey said.

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